Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Reflections on Change From a Recovering Change Hater

Slow summer days are winding down at  our home and with that the fall days are quickly coming into view.  This fall will usher in some dramatic changes for our little family.

Being on a teacher's schedule has always meant that we have experienced a shift in schedule and such when Eric returned to school.  But this year both of my babies will be joining the ranks of school children.  How can this be?

Myles, my oldest, will be going to young kinders.  He will be at a new school with a new teacher.  Although he has gone to preschool for the past two years, this mama hasn't really had to face the realities of sending a child to school since his teacher has been his Nana.  So this year my anxious heart is thrust further on the path of letting my child grow up.

 Boston, my baby, is starting preschool.  He is beyond excited to finally be able to go to "Cherry Lane School."  This signifies the beginning a major shift in my world.  Yes, it is only two mornings a week, but there will be four hours during the week during which both of my children will be in school.  My world is going to change.

Change and I have long been enemies.  I have fought fiercely to avoid him.  But try as I might, he continues to invade my world.  For many years I waged battle using any tactic I could.  Finally, I have come to a point of acceptance, and change and I are forging a relationship.

As I am staring at these impending changes I have been reflecting on how I have begun to reconcile with change.

 Change is going to happen
Even though every fiber of my being longs for this to be false, the more that I have come to acknowledge and accept this reality the closer I walk towards peace.  In the past I have lived as though I could alter this truth.

 I worked really hard create a world in which change did not have to occur.  Unfortunately I had to discover the hard way that no matter how hard I strived to build that world, it could not last.  The rigidity of that existence is bound to come crashing down.

 There can be joy in the change
In my effort to deny that change was going to happen this was a truth that I often ignored.  I was so focused on what I was losing, that I never stopped to consider what I might be gaining.

My hatred of change often distorted my view of what I was clinging to.  I ignored that there were any aspects of my current situation that were difficult.  I simply fought tooth and nail to keep things the way they were. 

I have learned the value of choosing to turn from this inclination, and to instead focus on the gifts that will come with the change.  Yes, my babies are starting to grow up.  But really, truly, do I want them to stay babies forever.  I have loved the baby stages, but do I want to indefinitely stay changing diapers and living without sleep forever?  No, no I do not.

As much as my heart will break watching my three year old run up the stairs to the brick building with a red door, truthfully it will be nice to have a few hours in the week to experience a little more freedom.   There are blessings in every turn of life.  I simply have to shift my gaze.

God is the only thing that will never change
My longing for things to stay unchanged is deeply rooted in fear.  If I could simply keep things the way that they are I would feel secure, in control.  Yet, God is saying to me, "My child let go.  Hold on to me." 

James 1:17: "Every good and perfect gift is from above,
coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights,
who does not change like shifting shadows."

God does not change like the "shifting shadows".  Everything else around me will, but He will not.  Tremendous peace is found in clinging to this eternal truth.

I don't think that I will ever love change.  If you come to my house in ten years you will probably find my furniture in the same place that it was ten years before.  But I am finding freedom in letting go, and finding beauty in the changes, while holding tight to my savior.


  1. Anne! I can't believe both the boys are going to be in school! I remember meeting you with a swollen belly, welcoming Myles into the world, celebrating your next pregnancy and Boston's birth! Crazy! We all do need to embrace change, as difficult as it may seem sometimes. Hope you're doing well!


    1. I know! It is amazing. I feel like it truly was just yesterday that I was pregnant with Myles. It sounds so cliche, but so true that it goes so fast. Sounds like you have some amazing changes coming up soon! I am enjoying reading about them and I look forward to reading about your adventures in Thailand. Hope to run into you while you are in Michigan :)

  2. What a blessing it will be for your little one who struggles in the same way to have a Mom who can help him navigate through the ups and downs of such anxiety.
    How fortunate for him! (Unlike poor you who had a Mom who loved change and you never knew when you came home from school if entire rooms would be changed! LOL).

    1. You may have loved change, but you definitly recognized my need for sameness as well! After all you did recreate my bedroom from our 31st street house in our new house down to the wallpaper :) Love you Mom!

    2. I forgot I did that! I do love you just the way you are....right down to you need for sameness!

  3. Anne, this post made me cry. My Joshie struggles in the same way, and I hope I can learn new ways to help him navigate life in a world that he simply cannot control forever.

    1. It is so difficult to watch your child struggle with change. As you know, Myles does as well. It is heartbreaking. But what a gift for Joshie that he has you as a mom. You do such a great job of helping him, it is inspiring to watch!

  4. Anne, this is so beautiful. It resonates with me - I hate change, though it is inevitable. Thanks for the reminder to cling to the Truth, the One Who is also the Way and the Life and the Door and Living Water... The One Who never changes.

    1. Thank you Susan! I am so thankful for a God who is the same yesterday, today, and forever!

  5. I'm so grateful for this post in this time of never ending change right now. It is a wonderful reminder to look for the gifts that God has waiting for us here rather than focusing on how different things are. Thank you!